Author promotion is a crucial part of how to market your book. Even the most introverted authors must get out and promote to sell books. Standard promotional methods include feature stories in magazines and newspapers, interviews on radio shows, and appearances on TV. The more an author is in front of the public, the more likely their book will stand out from the thousands of other books published each year. The internet has provided authors with a few more options for promotion and book advertising. So how should one go about author promotion and book advertising?
Proven publicity methods such as press releases, articles, podcasts, and radio campaigns remain cost-effective book marketing and author promotion tactics. Also, there are newer methods every author should put in place before beginning a book marketing campaign. The first is a website, which is essential because it will be the starting point for all online publicity. When publicists distribute a press release or ask for an interview, a producer will first search the author’s website to find out more. Sites also have become the starting point for research by readers, agents, and publishers as they try to find out more about a book.
The Role of Websites in Book Marketing Today
A website establishes the author’s brand and communicates directly to the public, unlike book publicity, where messages flow through the media. The best author sites showcase publications, link to any other mentions of books or authors on the web, contain the latest news and publication notices, and connect to various social networks. They should be attractive and professional and include a blog with posts about publications, appearances, and other news. The more content associated with the site, the more likely searchers will come upon it. With a blog, an author can continually add new and exciting content. In many cases, blog posts will automatically show on the author’s Facebook and Twitter pages, expanding their visibility.
Book Marketing with Social Media
Another book marketing tactic Smith Publicity recommends for authors is participating actively in Facebook, Twitter, and other social media sites. They are ideal places to discuss book content and connect with audiences to answer questions and build relationships. On social sites, authors can connect with other writers and people who work in the media, and some may ultimately plug the author on their blogs and pages. A Facebook fan page can contain links to the website and any videos the author may have developed. Sometimes a series of videos about topics related to the author’s work attracts visitors who would also be interested in purchasing the book.
Book Advertising and Blogs
A third online book marketing idea for authors is to guest-post on blogs that have good traffic. The author can try connecting with the blog owner and ask to be interviewed about a forthcoming publication. Guest-blogging can benefit both the blog owner and the author. Since blog readers can number in the thousands, it is a great way to provide new content for the blog owner and get the author in front of potential readers. Similar to guest-blogging, authors can also use forums to post comments on related topics. The author can link back to their website in a signature associated with the post.
Every author should set up a series of Google Alerts to be notified whenever something is posted online using their name or the title of a publication. These alerts will go into the author’s email, and they can respond by thanking anyone who has written them.
Book Advertising with Free Samples
A final proven online book advertising idea is to create a free sample of some book pages to attract people to a website. This free sample can also be placed on social media pages so that it can be shared easily. Anything free on the internet grabs people’s attention, and a give-away can be used as a tease to entice people to read the book.
Author promotion should enhance traditional book publicity methods or advertising by adding these web-based activities. Although press releases, articles, and interviews are still the mainstay of book PR and promotion, the potential of the internet for additional promotion can’t be overlooked. Online book advertising also can be an option. For more ideas to help promote a book, try reading our list of 101 book marketing ideas.